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Old 04-20-2016, 02:35 AM   #1
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Long time camper, New Chateau owner

After 2 years of dreaming, window shopping, reading internet articles, testing by renting, I finally bought my brand new 2016 chateau 22e, taking delivery next Tuesday.

I went to an RV show thinking I would just look again (had been to several in the past year) but I found exactly what was on my "must have" list and it was $23,000 off list. Woohoo!

Only 3 years till retirement but I have been taking 4 to 5 short trips every year for over 30 years and now I can have even more fun until I retire. From pup tents in the 80s to a 3 room tent, to a truck with camper shell to real luxury for me.

I wanted something small enough to park in my driveway, no slide outs, no captains chair, big ford engine. It's just perfect. Will be taking trips with my 3 dogs and my parrot.

I look forward to being a part of this forum.
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Old 04-20-2016, 02:40 AM   #2
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Welcome and congrats on the purchase.
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Old 04-20-2016, 03:41 AM   #3
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Welcome this is the place to learn the people on here are very knowledgeable and your questions will be answered by experience. We have a Four Winds 23U and love it. Have safe travels.
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Old 04-20-2016, 05:39 PM   #4
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Welcome aboard!
Another "Non Slider"!! Yippee!!!!
There are distinct advantages by not having a slide.
ie: Less places for leaks,rattles and frustrations, lower overall maintenance, more outside storage and are a lot easier to heat and cool due to the slides normally have very little insulation..
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Old 04-21-2016, 02:28 AM   #5
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I agree. And, if you are somewhere where you can't open the slide, you would have to sleep in the dining room. At least on the Chateau model 22u.
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Old 04-21-2016, 02:40 AM   #6
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When we bought our RV we had no idea whether we needed a slide or not and found out we don't but with that said everyone's needs are different. It is just DW and I with no pets or kids, I can see the need or the want for more living square footage and each to their own to fulfill their comfort. Its all fun either way.
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Old 04-21-2016, 04:24 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by saddlesore View Post
Welcome aboard!
Another "Non Slider"!! Yippee!!!!
There are distinct advantages by not having a slide.
ie: Less places for leaks,rattles and frustrations, lower overall maintenance, more outside storage and are a lot easier to heat and cool due to the slides normally have very little insulation..
Agree. Plus I suppose one could also argue that "Non Slider" should also lead to lighter weight, lower cost, and higher performance. Having said that, most of these disadvantages are minor to me compared to the feeling I get when inside RVs that have slides retracted.

If RV were a trailer, I may be able to deal with feeling of visual chaos a little easier because I wouldn't be riding in it. However, when I get inside most motorhomes and retract the slide(s), nothing seems to be in right place. I don't even know what to call it other than a feeling of there being clutter around me.

Since my interest is in an Axis (and all floorplans have slides), I'd prefer Thor add 6 inches to a foot of extra length in lieu of a slide to make floorplan more workable.
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Old 04-21-2016, 12:58 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Chance
If RV were a trailer, I may be able to deal with feeling of visual chaos a little easier because I wouldn't be riding in it. However, when I get inside most motorhomes and retract the slide(s), nothing seems to be in right place. I don't even know what to call it other than a feeling of there being clutter around me.
The slides in trailers & 5th wheels retract/extend a lot more than in motorhomes for the same reason you mention: You aren't riding in them when retracted. In our Axis the slide only moves about 24"; the slide on our prior two pull-behinds (5th, and a trailer) both would extend a good 4' and when retracted you couldn't get to any rooms rear of the slides.
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Old 04-21-2016, 01:49 PM   #9
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The slides in trailers & 5th wheels retract/extend a lot more than in motorhomes for the same reason you mention: You aren't riding in them when retracted. In our Axis the slide only moves about 24"; the slide on our prior two pull-behinds (5th, and a trailer) both would extend a good 4' and when retracted you couldn't get to any rooms rear of the slides.
My sister and brother-in-law purchased a large 5th wheel (I think +/- 42-feet) about a year ago and it's like you describe. To make it worse, a lot of furniture and other things have to be moved out of the way and secured before the slides can be retracted.

This would be fine if I were a full timer or moved once a week or so, but since I move sites almost every night it would take some of the fun out of traveling for me.

What I find interesting is that on average it seems smaller motorhomes get driven more than larger ones, which implies they move around more often. For that reason I think smaller motorhomes like the OP's should have floorplans without slides available.

And it shouldn't be viewed primarily as a means to lower cost -- which is the way the industry probably thinks about slideless. I think there is room to combine luxury features and slideless. Many Class Bs do it successfully, and it could work on Compact Class As like Axis also.
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Old 04-21-2016, 02:21 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chance
What I find interesting is that on average it seems smaller motorhomes get driven more than larger ones, which implies they move around more often. For that reason I think smaller motorhomes like the OP's should have floorplans without slides available.
Sure: smaller motorhomes are more maneuverable and thus easier to use as a "primary" vehicle when travelling.

A slideless motorhome fits this usage pattern perfectly as it does eliminate a few steps when setting up and breaking down as well as the other advantages you mention.
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Old 04-21-2016, 03:38 PM   #11
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Another factor I hadn't thought much about before reading discussions in this forum is the apparent need to level RVs fairly well before extending slides. Sometimes while sightseeing in national parks, for example, we may come back to site to sleep and eat breakfast before going out again the next morning. If I had to level the motorhome to open the slide(s), that would force me to get auto leveling as well.
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Old 04-21-2016, 04:22 PM   #12
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Another factor I hadn't thought much about before reading discussions in this forum is the apparent need to level RVs fairly well before extending slides. Sometimes while sightseeing in national parks, for example, we may come back to site to sleep and eat breakfast before going out again the next morning. If I had to level the motorhome to open the slide(s), that would force me to get auto leveling as well.
Leveling is not just a factor with slides it is also important, and maybe more so, for the RV refrigerators. A refrigerator that is too far out of level will not adequately cool.

In the years we had our class C I used Lync leveling blocks. I'd set the surface level on the floor determine how many blocks were needed, position them in front of the respective wheels, drive up and I was done. When leaving the site I would drive off the blocks, pack them up and leave.

The only advantages to automatic leveling jacks, in my opinion, are they do not require storage space and they serve as stabilizer as well as leveling jacks. The cons are they require maintenance and promote laziness (more exercise and activity manually leveling and cranking down and up the stabilizer jacks than there is sitting in the driver's seat and pushing a button).

Bottom line, leveling is not a drawback to slides since you need to be level for the refrigerator to operate and leveling can be done without automatic jacks.
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Old 04-21-2016, 04:33 PM   #13
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I use the tri-levelers sometimes in conjunction with the Lynx levelers. The tri-levelers are much easier to use on the rear dual tires. Only takes a few extra minutes to set up and not much bother if the campsite isn't too much out of level. don't weigh much and store away real easy.
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Old 04-21-2016, 06:46 PM   #14
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....cut....

Bottom line, leveling is not a drawback to slides since you need to be level for the refrigerator to operate and leveling can be done without automatic jacks.
Perhaps reports of having to level before extending slides were a little exaggerated; I don't know. As far as the fridge goes, I don't recall having to level to get it to work. My rear driveway at home is out of level enough that I wouldn't want to sleep that way, yet absorption refrigerators on my MH or rented RVs worked fine.

Many campgrounds we stay at have level concrete pads, and others allow enough flexibility in positioning a smaller RV to get it level enough. If it looks level and walking inside feels natural, that's been good enough for the refrigerators. Whether that's good enough for slides I don't know -- haven't seen specs with acceptable tolerances.
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Old 04-21-2016, 06:49 PM   #15
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Door closings and the shower floor will let you know if you're level also.
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Old 04-21-2016, 07:45 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chance
Perhaps reports of having to level before extending slides were a little exaggerated; I don't know. As far as the fridge goes, I don't recall having to level to get it to work. My rear driveway at home is out of level enough that I wouldn't want to sleep that way, yet absorption refrigerators on my MH or rented RVs worked fine.
I have to level in my driveway; if I don't the Axis' refer doesn't cool--it warms!

I also put the slide out when parked in the driveway and not level without issue. The slide in the 24.1 is so small I would expect it to work at almost any angle provided you're not twisting the frame up (e.g. don't try extending it while ascending a hill in Moab, UT).
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